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What We Believe

What We Believe

At Terrace Acres, we hold to our beliefs very closely. Each of our beliefs are based on scripture and those references are included with each of the topics below. Click on the topic name to read our belief about this topic and the references to go with it.

Statement of Beliefs

The Bible

The Bible is God’s revelation of Himself to man. The Bible has 66 books (39 Old Testament 27 New Testament) that are inspired by God, and without error in the original manuscripts. The bible was written in three languages ;( Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek). The inspiration for the Bible is from the Holy Spirit who superintended the writers of the Bible to write what they did to convey God’s message. God used human authors to convey his revelation of himself, our sin, salvation and his teachings. The Bible is inerrant in its original autographs, and is free of error in all issues, including but not limited to doctrine, historical issues, and other issues that may cast a negative light to God’s revelation. The Bible reveals God’s desire for Himself and His people. The Bible is the final authority of truth regarding God and man’s standing before Him.

Psalm 119, 2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Pet.1:21; 1 Cor. 2:13, Matthew 5:18, John 16:12-13, Hebrews 4:12.

The Godhead

God is eternal in nature, having no beginning nor ending. He is triune in essence; one God consisting of three persons, Father Son and Holy Spirit. There is no God that existed before Him, nor is there any to come. He is all-powerful, all-knowing, self existent, eternal, and completely satisfied in Himself. He is the one and only God. He is sovereign over all and is in joyful, loving community within Himself, the three persons being co-eternal, co-equal in attributes and perfection.

Genesis 1:1, Deuteronomy 6:4, Isaiah 40:12-14, Daniel 4:34-35; Matthew 16:16; Matthew 28:18-20, Luke 10:12-13, John 1:1, 14, John 10:30, Acts 5:1-4, 2 Corinthians 13:14, Philippians 1:2, 1 John 3:20

God The Father

God the Father created the world and is in control of the world He has made, and sends Jesus Christ to rescue and redeem sinners. He is a Holy, eternal, omnipresent, omnipotent, and omniscient. He is Creator (having spoken creation into being through His words), Initiator of salvation (sending His Son Jesus Christ), and Sovereign over the world and in control over all His creation. He is prayed to by believers through Jesus by the power of the Spirit.

Genesis 1:1; Ephesians 3:9, Revelation 4:11, Psalm 103:19, Revelation 4:8 Isaiah 57:15 Jeremiah 32:17,27 Psalm 139:7-12 1 John 3:20

God the Son

Jesus is both fully God and fully man, (Hypostatic Union) existing eternally before His Incarnation; becoming flesh and dwelling among us. Through Him, all things were created. He is seated now at the right hand of God the Father. He was born of a virgin, becoming man without ceasing to be God. He reveals God, lived a perfect, sinless life, and through his death and resurrection, was a substitutionary atonement for sinners; being the only way to be made right with God. Whether for all who had faith in God before the cross or after, Christ’s imputed

righteousness is enough to make unholy man right with a holy God. Through Him, redemption from sins is assured and secure. He died on the cross to redeem mankind, and resurrected to assure victory over death.

He is the propitiation for our sins, having removed the right wrath of God, bearing it in full. His resurrection was physical and literal. His ascension into heaven led to his exaltation at the right hand of God, and he is our High Priest, interceding on our behalf to God the father. He is our advocate, and the head of the church, His bride and body. He will come again bodily and in all glory to judge the living and the dead. As a part of the Trinity, Jesus is no different in essential nature to God the Father, yet is subordinate in office to the Father.

Isaiah 9:6-7, Isaiah 53, Matthew 1:21-23, Luke 1:35, John 1:1-12, 14 Acts 1:9-10, Romans 3:24-25, 4:25, 8:34 Ephesians 1:7, 1:22-23, 4:15, 5:23, Colossians 1:18, 2:9 Hebrews 2:9, 7:25, 9:24 1 Timothy 2:5, 4:10, 2 Timothy 4:1, 1 Peter 1:3-5, 2:24, 2 Peter 2:1

God the Holy Spirit

The Holy Spirit is God. He shares in the work of Creation (through filling and giving life to Creation), convicts of and judges sin, regenerates people to faith, baptizes believers into the body of Christ at conversion, indwells believers, and seals believers unto the day of redemption. He can be sinned against, and He can be grieved. He speaks to and empowers believers, comforts them during suffering, endows them with at least one spiritual gift with which to serve the church, and illuminates the Scriptures to believers. He guides believers in truth and assures them of salvation. He intercedes before God the Father for believers.

Genesis 1:2, Job 33:4, Matthew 28:19, John 16:8–11, Acts 5, Acts 13:2, Romans 12, 1 Corinthians 12, 2 Corinthians 3:6; 1 Corinthians 12:12–14; Romans 8:9; Ephesians 1:13-14, 5:18.

Man

Man was created in the image and likeness of God and uniquely reflects God over all other created things. However, man is not divine. While having a body and soul, man’s knowledge is limited while God’s is not. In Adam, the head of the human race, however, man sinned. All of Adam’s descendants are born with a sinful nature. Due to our inherent sinful nature, all men and women now are alienated from God due to their sin, and are hopeless and helpless apart from the saving work of Christ through the regeneration of the Holy Spirit. Man is totally depraved and unable to help himself out of his lost condition, subsequently being dead in his trespasses and sins. While man is capable of good deeds in a human sense, he is “totally depraved’ in the sense that he cannot earn grace or forgiveness through being good. Before man fell, he was created to live in fellowship with God forever. Due to the fall, death entered into the world.

Genesis 1:26-7, 3:1-13, 9:6; Isaiah 55:8-9, Romans 3:23, 5:12-21, Ephesians 2:1-3.

Sin/Fall

Sin is anything mankind would say, think, or do that God does not approve of. It is any and all violations of God’s nature, character or will. Sin is to go against and/or violate God’s character, standards and commands. Everyone who has ever lived, is currently living or will live has a sin nature inherited by Adam, in whom we have all sinned. Due to the events in the Garden of Eden in Genesis 3 where Eve and Adam disobeyed God, and ate of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, mankind fell. Due to our sin, we stand separated from God, and deserving of His wrath and eternal punishment. The effects of sin are physical death, spiritual separation from God, and a fallen world. Sin unleashed evil into the world, with the world becoming fallen as a result. Man now stands depraved, as sin has touched every sphere of mankind; body, spirit, soul, mind, emotions. While man is not as bad as he could be, he is touched by sin. Nothing good enough for salvation can come out of him, rendering him unable to make himself right with God. While man can do good acts, he is not capable of saving himself by those good acts. Adam was the first head of the human race. In Adam, the entire human race has inherited a sin nature. In Adam, sin and death came to all people. Man now does not have the ability to choose contrary to his nature. He (man) will choose sin.

Genesis 3, Isaiah 14:12-15, Romans 3:10,23, Romans 5:14-19, 1 Corinthians 15:45

Salvation/Gospel

Salvation is by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone and is a free gift from God. Salvation is needed for man stands before God guilty of sin and condemned to hell as punishment for that sin. While impossible for man to achieve, Christ achieved salvation for anyone who trusts in Him by his death and resurrection. While in the Old Testament, faith in God was necessary (Abraham) to be made right with God, in the New Testament we find the same. Christ was the substitutionary atonement for sins, absorbing the punishment due mankind (God’s right wrath). Salvation is the gift of God, through the blood of Jesus Christ. Right

standing before God, which man needs but cannot achieve is imputed to man from Christ in salvation, making man right with God. The gospel means “good news,’ referring to the news that man can be reconciled with God due to Jesus Christ. The gospel comes from God, and is the power of God for the salvation of man.

John 1:12, Romans 1:16, 3:23-25, 4:4-5, 5:8, 6:23; 1 Corinthians 15:1-4; Ephesians 1:7-15, Ephesians 2:8-10,

Sanctification

Sanctification is the process in which a believer is made more like Jesus Christ; a process that takes the remainder of the believer’s life. The believer is “set apart” for Christ’s purpose, learning through daily living what it means to follow and take joy in Christ alone. While the everlasting victory is secured and won, the daily fights are still to be fought, and struggle is assured. Through the fight and struggle, the believer will behold Christ and marvel at His work. The believer is empowered through the Holy Spirit for this daily walk.

Galatians 5:16, 25 Ephesians 2:10, 4:22-24, Philippians 3:12

Glorification

The act of man receiving his incorruptible and immortal body to live eternally with Christ in heaven; completing God’s dealing with sin and Christ’s work of redemption.

Romans 8:17, 23-24, 30, 1 Corinthians 15:42-44,49-54

Eternal Security of Believers

The belief that once converted and saved, man cannot be lost again. Due to salvation being by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone, man has not earned it. Consequently, man can neither un-earn it either. While a believer can have interrupted communion with God due to his/her sin, their union with God remains secure. Anyone who has been saved by grace through faith by Christ can be assured that their eternity is secure in Jesus Christ. Believers are kept by the power of God displayed by the Holy Spirit. While this liberty should not be a license to sin, it should come as a comfort when the believer sins, knowing that those sins are forgiven, and should lead to rejoicing and further desire for Christian living. One cannot keep themselves saved, since we didn’t save ourselves in the first place, we remain saved by grace, by His power.

John 3:5-6, 6:37–40, Romans 6:1-5, 8:1, 38-39, Romans 13:13-14, 1 Corinthians 1:4–8, Ephesians 1:13-15, 1 Peter 1:5, 1 John 5:11-13.

Eternal State of Man/Judgment

Every man will be bodily resurrected; some to heaven(glorification) and others to hell (damnation), due to Christ’s resurrection. The resurrection of Jesus assures his followers that they too will be raised as well to receive a new incorruptible body. The resurrected body is not subject to death or sin. After death, the souls of unbeliever will be in misery until the Second Resurrection. Then after the Great White Throne Judgment, they will be cast into the Lake of Fire to suffer everlasting torment. Believers at death are absent from the body and present with the Lord. They wait for the return of Christ to set up His earthly Kingdom. However, believers will be judged at the judgment seat of Christ, for the degree of reward, not on whether they are to be cast into hell.

Matthew 25:41-46 Luke 16:19-26, Luke 23:43, 1 Corinthians 15, 2 Corinthians 5:8-10; Philippians 1:23, 3:21; 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17, 2 Thessalonians 1:7-9

The Church

The church universal is the body and bride of Christ, created by Him for His glory. There is both the “big c” church (the church universal made up of all believers in heaven and on Earth) and there is the “little c” church; the local body of believers. The church is a living organism, made up of all true believers who upon conversion are baptized by the Holy Spirit into the church. The church is under the rule and headship of Christ. The church’s purpose is the glorify God by displaying Him to the world through its’ ministries and its’ worship of Him. Both called out and sent out, and calling out and sending out, the church is at once both universal in scope, and local in expressions. While Jesus is the head of the church, the church is governed by elders, and assisted by deacons, both being people who desire the best for God’s church. The church is not Israel but a separate entity under an entirely new covenant. The church is called the bride of Christ showing distinctions in how God relates to each.

Acts 2:42-47, I Corinthians 12-14,

Christian Life

Based on the justification and sanctification of the believer, Christians are called to a lifestyle of ministry and service for the building up of the church with the ultimate aim of the glory of God. This includes clinging to those disciplines and practices that encourage Christ-like behavior, and separation from those things that discourage such behavior.

1 Peter 1:15-16, Acts 1:8

Ordinances - Baptism

An immersion in water that signifies one’s identification with a belief or cause. For Christians it is the identification of the believer with Christ in death, burial, and resurrection. Some believe in the practice of affusion, where water is poured on the head of the person being baptized. While they do not deny the legitimacy of other baptism modes, they feel as if affusion is enough. Still, others believe in aspersion/sprinkling. The Greek word for “Baptize” translates into English as “Immerse.” While baptism doesn’t save someone, it is one of the first steps of obedience a new Christian can take.

Matthew 28:18-20, Acts 2:38-9, Romans 6, 1 Corinthians 1:14-17

Ordinances - Communion/Lord’s Supper

The act of remembering with thanks and introspection the sacrifice of Christ through taking bread and wine/juice. The bread and wine/juice correspond to the body and blood of Jesus Christ. While some feel as if the body and blood of Christ are literally present, and others believe that the bread/wine-juice becomes the body and blood after the blessing from the minister, it would seem to be more biblically faithful to say that The Lord’s Supper is a symbolic remembrance of the death of Christ, and his literal body and blood are not present. Neither is his spiritual presence there as purported in trans and con-substantive views. This act was instituted by Jesus before his death and resurrection.

Matthew. 26:26-30; Mark 14:22-26; Luke 22:14-20; 1 Corinthians 11:23-26

The Return of Christ

Jesus will return to earth in God’s sovereign timing, for His redeemed people, and will reign with His people to establish His kingdom. Rapture, Tribulation, Reign, and Eternal rest/punishment will be the order of Jesus’ return.

1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, 1:10, 5:9, Zechariah 14:4-11 Revelation 19:11-16, 20:1-6, 3:10

Current Social and Church Issues

Homosexuality

God created man and woman from the beginning. By participating in homosexuality one distorts Gods original plan for intimacy to be between a man and a women. Homosexuality is equal to all other sins and is not more sinful than one that may commit adultery, lie, or steal. Sin entered the womb before birth due to the fall of man with Adam and Eve, thus causing some people to be more inclined to lie and others to commit sexual immorality. One must repent of their sin to be fully forgiven and must turn from the sexual immorality that separated them from God.

Lev. 18:22, Leviticus 20:13 1 Cor. 6:9-10 Romans 1:26-28

False Religions/False Prophets (Mormonism, Jehovah’s Witness, Oneness Pentecostalism, Prosperity Gospel, Roman Catholicism, Secular Humanism, Atheism, Universalism, Wicca)

Throughout the New Testament we are warned about false teachers and prophets that will try to cause us to believe in false doctrine. The above mentioned are a few of many false teachings that are in the world today. In 1 John were told to test every spirit to tell whether they are from Christ or from the evil one. The goal of false teachings is to confuse the believer or unbeliever and open them up to attacks from the evil one.

2 Peter 2:1 1 Timothy 1:3 1John 4:1-4 Isaiah 44:25 Matthew 7:15 Matthew 24:11

Matthew 24:24 Mark 13:22

Marriage/Divorce

Marriage was first instituted by God in the Garden of Eden. It is a monogamous, physical, and spiritual union between a man and a woman, where adultery was forbidden, and dissolution was not allowed. But it didn’t take long for the monogamous arrangement to become corrupted. God created the institution of marriage to be between one man and one woman. Marriage is a symbolic gesture that represents the relationship with Christ and His church. Divorce is strictly prohibited throughout scripture with the exception of infidelity and abandonment. However, even with infidelity and abandonment believers still are encouraged to work through the problem and remain in marriage with one another. Divorce may make a man ineligible for certain positions in the Church.(i.e. Pastor, Overseer, or Deacon).

Genesis 2:21-24 Exodus 20:14 Matthew 5:31-32 Matthew 19:9 Mark 10:11-12 Luke 16:18

1 Corinthians 7:11 1 Timothy 3:1-10

Qualification for Elders

The elder is a leader in the Christian church. It is a divinely-appointed office that is held by men who are able to teach sound doctrine, refute error, be of good reputation, having believing children, who manage their households well, and the husband of one wife. The elder should not be in office if he is unable to fulfill the requirements of the office and he should not be chosen because he is a popular figure in the local church.

1 Tim 4:14 2 Tim 1:6 1 Tim 5:17 Titus 1:5-7 1 Tim 3:2-4 1 Tim 1:9

Women in ministry

We believe that women are created equal and are loved in the eyes of God. However, we do feel that God has created men and women for different roles in the home and in ministry. Scripture is clear that women should not hold spiritual authoritative positions over men and are not allowed to be Pastors, Elders, or Overseers. We affirm that women are able and should be encouraged to participate and lead in the teaching of other women and children and in the fulfillment of the Great Commission through missions opportunities.

Titus 1:5-6 1 Timothy 2: 12-14

Abortion

We have the belief that the creation of a human life begins when fertilization of the egg has occurred. God clearly prohibits murder and since the fertilized egg is deemed a human then killing it though abortion or by any unnatural act is murder and is viewed by God as such. God loves all of his creation even the unborn and He alone determines life and death and it is not left up to sinful man.

Genesis. 9:6 Matthew. 15:19; 19:18; Mark. 10:19; Luke. 18:20; John. 8:44; Acts 3:14; Romans 1:28-29; 13:9.

Jeremiah 1:5 Matthew 1:20 Luke 1:41